No one wants to go to church anymore… at least that’s according to new data from Lifeway Research. Around 4,500 Protestant churches closed in 2019, only about 3,000 new churches opened. Since they started tracking, this is the first time that churches in the US hadn’t grown. Part of this is blamed on Covid, as people just haven’t completely returned to church attendance like they did before the pandemic.
Protestant pastors report that attendance is only 85% of pre-pandemic levels. Another study from the University of Chicago found that last year 67% of Americans reported attending church at least once a year, compared to 75% before the pandemic.
But we can’t blame Covid entirely. The Church has been losing its appeal for a long time.
This downward trend started decades ago. In 1972,